Russian President Vladimir Putin accused Canada on Wednesday of delaying the return of a German turbine from the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline, which is being repaired on Canadian soil, to try to sell its hydrocarbons on the European market.
The fate of this Siemens machine created uncertainty about the future of deliveries from Russia. This equipment is provided by Moscow as necessary for the smooth operation of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline. The infrastructure supplies Russian gas to Germany and Europe.
Canada returned the equipment to Germany after hesitating about the sanctions imposed on Moscow by Russia’s attack on Ukraine. The delivery date for Moscow is unknown.
“One device had to be repaired. Canada did not return the device due to economic sanctions against Gazprom, but repairs were made at a Siemens factory,” Putin told Tass news agency.
“I will tell you why Canada is doing this. Because it also produces oil and gas and plans to enter the European market,” said the Russian President.
The Nord Stream pipeline is currently closed for ten days of maintenance to be completed on Thursday, 21st.
But European countries fear that Moscow will cling to a technical rationale to prevent their deliveries from resuming and put pressure on them in the context of the conflict with Ukraine.
Before shutting down Nord Stream 1, Russia had significantly reduced its gas supply in recent weeks due to the lack of Siemens turbines.
Germany on Wednesday described the argument as an “excuse”, while the European Union accused Moscow of using the gas “as a weapon”.